Election Commission revises rule for polling agents

Kolkata: The Election Commission of India (ECI) has decided to revise its rules for polling agents, allowing a party to nominate a polling agent for any booth within the assembly segment where the person is an electorate, a senior official said on Tuesday.

Earlier, a polling agent had to be a voter of the booth where he was to be a polling agent.

“This new norm will help the political parties to appoint one polling agent to each booth. It will help any political party to appoint a polling agent amid the COVID-19 pandemic since getting one agent at this hour may be difficult,” he said.

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The number of polling stations in West Bengal has increased from 78,903 in the 2019 Lok Sabha polls to 1,01,790 for the 2021 Assembly election.

Meanwhile, fearing that bike rallies may intimidate electorates, the poll panel has decided not to allow bike rallies 72 hours before polling, the official said.

The eight-phase election for the 294 seat West Bengal Assembly will be held between March 27 and April 29. Votes will be counted on May 2.

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